Press release

Government showcases North as financial services hotspot

Northern Powerhouse Minister challenges global financial services companies to tap in to the wealth of talent the region has to offer.

  • James Wharton highlights the contribution of Northern Powerhouse to the UK’s leading global position in financial services
  • the sector employs over 400,000 across the North
  • ‘near-shore’ services moving even more jobs into the area

The Northern Powerhouse Minister, James Wharton today (6 February 2016) challenged global financial services companies to tap in to the wealth of talent the region has to offer.

He was speaking after attending an event in Leeds promoted by UK Trade & Investment, which has showcased the Yorkshire region as a Financial Centre of Excellence. The minister will attend a similar event in Manchester later this month.

Despite London’s square mile being undisputed as Europe’s financial capital, Mr Wharton highlighted that most people employed by the sector in this country were based outside of the Capital.

The growing financial services industry in the Northern Powerhouse boasts more than 400,000 jobs.

In 2012 alone, such companies across the Leeds and Sheffield city regions contributed £14.06 billion to the UK economy.

Several key players in the sector are choosing to ‘near-shore’ their services, moving jobs both of out London and back to the UK from overseas. These include:

  • Bank of Merrill Lynch employs over 700 people at its office in Chester, its largest site outside of London in the whole of Europe, the Middle East and Africa
  • PwC has expanded in Leeds, and now employs over 700 people in the city
  • International specialist bank and asset manager Investec announced November 2015 that they will launch an investment banking operation in the North of England
  • Barclays announced just last month that it would be expanding its operations in Liverpool, creating 300 new jobs at its Liverpool call centre

Northern Powerhouse Minister James Wharton said:

The financial services sector in the UK goes far beyond London and has a powerful presence in the North of England as well.

Knowing the talent the Northern Powerhouse has to offer, it is no surprise the world’s financial heavyweights want to play a part and recognise what its great cities and skilled workforces have to offer.

We will continue to work with local leaders and the business community to make the region even more of a magnet to the financial services sector.

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